Friday, August 01, 2014

Hoping for the perfect companion...

I can’t resist checking out the small animals at Magoo’s when going to get dog food for Hollister. They have quite an assortment of birds, lizards and rats (still gag!), guinea pigs and gerbils.

This time as I perused the aisle, I suddenly fell into a 45-year-old memory of me desperately wanting one of the little furry creatures that I could carry with me in my pocket and pull out any time day or night. Time suddenly stood still as I remembered picking out all the gerbils I ever had, baby gerbils so I could make sure I could tame them to my human touch. I so distinctly remember truly believing that these small little pets would be so wonderful to have with me. I would do everything I could to make their little lives perfect.

And it usually worked out great for a while. I fed them, bought them great little gerbil toys, cleaned their gerbil homes, and gave them great gerbil treats. They must have been happy with all my care and attention. I would take them out of their little homes frequently and pet them oh-so-gently out of great affection for their companionship. These little gerbils added so much meaning to my life. I loved having them as a part of my daily existence.

Until they bit me.

And they ALWAYS ended up biting me.

I stood there this morning staring at the gerbils, remembering how disappointed I felt with every single gerbil I ever brought into my life. I had hoped for the perfect companion. I worked hard at giving them a really great life.

But they bit me.

Every single gerbil I ever bought bit me.

And what is a gerbil if they just stay in their cage and run on that wheel? I wanted them to love me back – I wanted them to look forward to me coming home and pulling them from their tiny little homes into the far more comforting place of my hands.

Was that so awful? Did they have to bite me? Some drew blood!!

I lost interest in gerbils after a while. As much as those little furry creatures seemed to beg me to free them from the store, I knew they would turn on me, even after I had given them my very best.

As I turned away from them this morning, climbing the walls to get out of their cage, seeming to plead with me to take them home, I thought about the amazing ways God can speak to us about greater truths in life.

Am I still that little girl wanting perfect companions that won’t bite me? Do I do that with people too?

Maybe that’s why I like dogs and don’t mind hurting my back loading a 20-pound bag of dog food into my car. Hollister has never bitten me – at least not yet. What would I do if he did? Would I lose interest in caring for him?

I think I would.

So now what am I supposed to do with THAT??

For now, I’m going to look forward to going home tonight and seeing Hollister literally jump for joy at seeing me, like I am the greatest person in life, like he is so so grateful to just be with me, to have me pet him and take care of him – and to be a wonderful companion in a life that simply does not have enough shared moments of utter joy of simply being together…

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